Long Copy Vs. Short Copy

Believe it or not, there’s still a debate as to whether long copy is better than short.  Most of the naysayers of long copy are under the belief that no one reads long copy anymore.  The theory is that people are “too busy” these days and there’s “too much other media” floating around.

Although this argument sounds logical, it’s complete BS.  Long copy is king.  Gary Halbert, the Direct Response Copywriter King, once wrote, “Copy can never be too long, only too boring.”

Thousands of studies have shown that long copy converts higher than short copy.  That’s why online direct response offers sell highest when you link to a presale page.  Presale pages come in long form – that’s where affiliates do all the selling.  BTW, it is proven that the more of an “editorial” look your presale page has, the higher the reader engagement.  Logic follows that the higher the reader engagement, the higher the CTR to your product landing page.

It’s a fact that true prospects will read through a lot if not all of your long copy before they buy.  Make sure you write a long enough copy to gain your prospect’s attention, create interest, stir up desire, and motivate them to take action.  Telling isn’t selling – so don’t just fill the copy up with a bunch of non-sense.   Pile on the benefits of your product, add compelling pictures so they can see it, throw on every testimonial you can find for social proofing, and add guarantees/warranties/trials – anything that lowers risk.

A lot of the people that believe short copy converts higher are under the false impression that consumers will actually read all the copy before they buy.  That is total nonsense!  When consumers read through long-copy ads, if they’re ready to buy after reading the first paragraph they’ll fill out the call to action box and buy.  They don’t have a compunction to keep reading.  NO!  They’re sold right there on the spot.

On the other hand, some consumers will do as much due diligence as possible before they buy.  That’s why you can’t go wrong with long copy.  People that are instantly gratified will read a paragraph or two and buy.  Other’s will read all the way through, feel that they’ve done their due diligence, and then buy. Just make sure to have multiple call to action buttons throughout your copy so you can make it EASYYYYYYY for people to buy.

In Cashvertising, Drew Whitman pointed out an interesting study.  MarketingExperiments.com conducted several tests to see what impact copy length has on a Website’s conversion rate.

RESULTS: Long copy outperformed short copy in all three of their tests.

Tell us your experience.  Is long copy converting higher than short copy?

P.S. Research has shown that fewer, longer pages converts higher than having the copy spread out across multiple pages.


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Rich Gorman is an internet entrepreneur. His primary focuses are on direct response offers and SaaS models. When not working Rich enjoys spending time with his family.